Major £2.1m restoration work begins on Ribblehead Viaduct in North Yorkshire

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Scaffolding has been erected on the world-famous Ribblehead Viaduct in North Yorkshire as major restoration work gets underway.

£2.1million is being spent to repair the 144-year-old Grade II listed structure as part of the Great North Rail Project.

In April Network Rail came forward with a plan to re-point eroded mortar joints and replace broken stones on the 24-arch, 400-metre-long, 32-metre-high structure. Following months of preparation, work has begun. 

Network Rail has said the works will cost £2.1m Credit: Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority

Jim Munday from Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, said:

He added:  "We’re so pleased Network Rail is investing significantly in Ribblehead Viaduct and carrying out the first major repairs since the 1990s. 

"This was a massive application for listed building consent to deal with and I’m thankful that we’ve been able to draw on internal and external expertise to get it just right."

Phil James, North West route director at Network Rail, said: "It’s a privilege to look after so many significant buildings and structures across the rail network, but Ribblehead Viaduct has got to be one of the crown jewels of Victorian civil engineering.

"We know the structure is incredibly important both locally and internationally, and we want to give it the care and attention that it deserves so it can be enjoyed by future generations of passengers and sightseers."

Work on the viaduct, which is on the Settle to Carlisle route, is expected to finish next February.